Style Icons: Male »Stephen Malkmus

Stephen MalkmusIt’s not like Brittany’s going to pick a Pavement song any time soon, mainly because it’s music that tends to work best for dudes. My good friend Danny‘s copy of Slow Century sits prominently on a bookshelf in our living room and whenever we have a party Marcus considers borrowing is, but he knows he’d have to watch it by himself –?hich is the main reason I’ve yet to see it.

Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain and Slanted and Enchanted are my picks (though there’s a lot to like about Terror Twilight and Wowee Zowee), mainly because the double disc editions that Matador released a couple of years ago came out out at a time when I was working in a place that sold CDs and I was able to listen to the amazing previously unreleased material all day long. But Malkmus’s post Pavement stuff is awesome as well. I’m particularly partial to Pig Lib, where I think that as a guitar player he really began to face the truth (lolz) and reflect on just how little distance there was between where his own work was going and the music of the man who, throughout the entire 1990s stood as his diametric opposite, Trey Anastasio.

But it’s not just his guitar playing, it’s his attitude that makes him one of may all time favorite famous dudes. I don’t think I’ve ever read an interview where he doesn’t put someone down – and he’s usually he’s totally in the right. On Billy Corgan:

“I don’t really know. Some people say he’s nice, but he’s full of himself. He has a lot of fans so I can see how that happens. They weren’t very good in concert, they sounded real bad.”

Other times, he’s just being a dick:

“For all the mistakes that were made marketing Pavement, it comes down to the song; and the song [Cut Your Hair] was pretty good, but it just wasn’t the song of the time. The Offspring song [“Come Out and Play”], “Cannonball” by the Breeders — those were bigger songs people could get behind.”

Kim Deal responded pretty awesomely on the last page of a magazine I am somehow subscribed to for life (I haven’t paid them in at least 3 years):

“Yeah, I liked Pavement. But if he keeps fucking smacking his mouth off about me, I’m going to end up not being able to listen to any of their fucking records again. Anyway, I thought, God, man, “Cut Your Hair” isn’t as good of a song as “Cannonball,” so fuck you. How’s that? Your song was just a’ight, dawg.”

Fair enough.

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Posted on December 8, 2008

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